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Chatham Names New District Leaders

PITTSBORO — The Chatham County Board of Education on June 6, 2022, approved two new district leaders.

Dr. Kelly Batten was named the new Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources.  Dr. Batten is currently the Executive Director for High Schools and Career and Technical Education.  He has served in this role since 2012 and has 26 years in public education.  Dr. Batten also has experience as a High School Principal with the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools System and as Assistant Principal for Instruction and teacher with the Wake County Public School System.  Recently, Dr. Batten completed the North Carolina Aspiring Superintendents Program and has previously been recognized as an ACT K-12 Champion, NCASA Administrator of the Year, NC Principal Fellows, and NC Teaching Fellows.

Dr. Batten will begin the new role starting Aug. 1. “Student learning represents our core purpose, with the talents and expertise of our staff representing our greatest assets. I look forward to supporting, sustaining, and celebrating the talents and expertise of our staff in this new school year.” 

LaShonda Hester was named Executive Director for Middle Grades Instruction. In her new role, Hester will lead the district’s curriculum and instruction efforts in the middle grades to support the academic achievement of all students across the district. Hester has 18 years of service as an educator, six of which have been with Chatham County Schools. She is currently a principal in the Alamance-Burlington School District. Previously she was the Assistant Principal and Principal of Margaret B. Pollard Middle School for six years. Her school-based experiences include elementary, middle and charter school principal, assistant principal, coach and middle school classroom teacher positions. 

Mrs. Hester was awarded the 2021 CSUSA Award of Excellence for her leadership.

“Education is a powerful tool that all students deserve.  A high-quality education provides an avenue for student success in the classroom and beyond.  I look forward to working with and supporting schools to ensure all students receive a high-quality education.”

Chatham County Schools Superintendent Dr. Anthony Jackson said both leaders have experience that makes them a tremendous asset to the district. 

“We are extremely fortunate to have both of these accomplished educators joining our team. Both bring successful track records, talent and expertise to their new roles,” Jackson said. “The depth of experience each brings will help us realize our vision of preparing all students for bright and prosperous futures as we work to build and develop ‘One Chatham’ for all students.”